Staff writer
Leyte Samar Daily Express

TACLOBAN CITY – The extended registration conducted by the Commission on Elections in Eastern Visayas had only netted over 7,000 new voters, a turnout described as “low” by Regional Director Jose Nick Mendros.

Last December, the Comelec conducted an extended registration among qualified voters based on the decision of the Supreme Court which upheld a petition by a youth group.

Here in the region, the five-day registration, which ended last December 29, resulted for 7,810 new voters, Mendros said.

“It was low,” the regional director said, referring to the turnout of qualified voters who flocked to the various local poll offices in the region.

Mendros had earlier expressed his opposition in the conduct of an extended registration saying that it would affect their schedule relative to the conduct of the May 10 elections on top of the fact of his projection that only very few would avail such undertaking.

“But we are a collegiate body. We have no option but to follow the order,” he said.

During the extended registration, it was learned that several towns in the region yielded less than 10 new voters.

In fact, in one town, Maslog in Eastern Samar, not a single person had availed the extended registration. At present, the registered voters of the said town stand at 2,965.

Among the towns which have less than 10 persons who trooped to their respective Comelec offices during the extended registration were Gandara, two; San Jose de Buan, three, both in Samar province; Padre Burgos, seven, Pintuyan, eight and San Ricardo, nine, all towns located in Southern Leyte.

Meantime, Tacloban City posted the highest number of individuals who availed the extended registration with 678 voters. At present, the city has 101,120 qualified voters. Catbalogan City was second with 236 followed by Maasin City at 118.

The following have at least 100 or more persons who availed of the extended registration: Matuguinao (112) and Basey (101), both in Samar; Palompon, 110; Palo (109), Carigara, (109) and Baybay City, (100), all in Leyte.

The 7, 810 voters who have enlisted during the extended registration would boost the region’s current registered voters of 2,432,370, the records of the Comelec-8 reveals.

Leyte had the biggest number of individuals who availed the extended registration at 3,085 followed by Samar with 1,595; Northern Samar, 1, 322; Eastern Samar, 872; Southern Leyte,660 and Biliran, 276.

Among its six provinces, Leyte has the biggest number of registered voters at more than 1,027,709 followed by Samar with 449,123 voters.

Northern Samar has 343,579, Eastern Samar (265,810), Southern Leyte (247,598) and Biliran (98,551).

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